Posts Tagged ‘status’

Finding top access IPs in Webserver or how to delay connects from Bots (Web Spiders) to your site to prevent connect Denial of Service

Friday, September 15th, 2017


If you're a sysadmin who has to deal with cracker attemps for DoS (Denial of Service) on single or multiple servers (clustered CDN or standalone) Apache Webservers, nomatter whether working for some web hosting company or just running your private run home brew web server its very useful thing to inspect Web Server log file (in Apache HTTPD case that's access.log).

Sometimes Web Server overloads and the follow up Danial of Service (DoS) affect is not caused by evil crackers (mistkenly often called hackers but by some data indexing Crawler Search Engine bots who are badly configured to aggressively crawl websites and hence causing high webserver loads flooding your servers with bad 404 or 400, 500 or other requests, just to give you an example of such obstructive bots.

1. Dealing with bad Search Indexer Bots (Spiders) with robots.txt

Just as I mentioned hackers word above I feel obliged to expose the badful lies the press and media spreading for years misconcepting in people's mind the word cracker (computer intruder) with a hacker, if you're one of those who mistakenly call security intruders hackers I recommend you read Dr. Richard Stallman's article On Hacking to get the proper understanding that hacker is an cheerful attitude of mind and spirit and a hacker could be anyone who has this kind of curious and playful mind out there. Very often hackers are computer professional, though many times they're skillful programmers, a hacker is tending to do things in a very undstandard and weird ways to make fun out of life but definitelely follow the rule of do no harm to the neighbor.

Well after the short lirical distraction above, let me continue;

Here is a short list of Search Index Crawler bots with very aggressive behaviour towards websites:


# mass download bots / mirroring utilities
1. webzip
2. webmirror
3. webcopy
4. netants
5. getright
6. wget
7. webcapture
8. libwww-perl
11. Teleport / TeleportPro
12. Zeus

Note that some of the listed crawler bots are actually a mirroring clients tools (wget) etc., they're also included in the list of server hammering bots because often  websites are attempted to be mirrored by people who want to mirror content for the sake of good but perhaps these days more often mirror (duplicate) your content for the sake of stealing, this is called in Web language Content Stealing in SEO language.

I've found a very comprehensive list of Bad Bots to block on Mike's tech blog his website provided example of bad robots.txt file is mirrored as plain text file here

Below is the list of Bad Crawler Spiders taken from his site:


# robots.txt to prohibit bad internet search engine spiders to crawl your website
# Begin block Bad-Robots from robots.txt
User-agent: asterias
User-agent: BackDoorBot/1.0
User-agent: Black Hole
User-agent: BlowFish/1.0
User-agent: BotALot
User-agent: BuiltBotTough
User-agent: Bullseye/1.0
User-agent: BunnySlippers
User-agent: Cegbfeieh
User-agent: CheeseBot
User-agent: CherryPicker
User-agent: CherryPickerElite/1.0
User-agent: CherryPickerSE/1.0
User-agent: CopyRightCheck
User-agent: cosmos
User-agent: Crescent
User-agent: Crescent Internet ToolPak HTTP OLE Control v.1.0
User-agent: DittoSpyder
User-agent: EmailCollector
User-agent: EmailSiphon
User-agent: EmailWolf
User-agent: EroCrawler
User-agent: ExtractorPro
User-agent: Foobot
User-agent: Harvest/1.5
User-agent: hloader
User-agent: httplib
User-agent: humanlinks
User-agent: InfoNaviRobot
User-agent: JennyBot
User-agent: Kenjin Spider
User-agent: Keyword Density/0.9
User-agent: LexiBot
User-agent: libWeb/clsHTTP
User-agent: LinkextractorPro
User-agent: LinkScan/8.1a Unix
User-agent: LinkWalker
User-agent: LNSpiderguy
User-agent: lwp-trivial
User-agent: lwp-trivial/1.34
User-agent: Mata Hari
User-agent: Microsoft URL Control – 5.01.4511
User-agent: Microsoft URL Control – 6.00.8169
User-agent: MIIxpc
User-agent: MIIxpc/4.2
User-agent: Mister PiX
User-agent: moget
User-agent: moget/2.1
User-agent: mozilla/4
User-agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; BullsEye; Windows 95)
User-agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 4.0; Windows 95)
User-agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 4.0; Windows 98)
User-agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 4.0; Windows NT)
User-agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 4.0; Windows XP)
User-agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 4.0; Windows 2000)
User-agent: Mozilla/4.0 (compatible; MSIE 4.0; Windows ME)
User-agent: mozilla/5
User-agent: NetAnts
User-agent: NICErsPRO
User-agent: Offline Explorer
User-agent: Openfind
User-agent: Openfind data gathere
User-agent: ProPowerBot/2.14
User-agent: ProWebWalker
User-agent: QueryN Metasearch
User-agent: RepoMonkey
User-agent: RepoMonkey Bait & Tackle/v1.01
User-agent: RMA
User-agent: SiteSnagger
User-agent: SpankBot
User-agent: spanner
User-agent: suzuran
User-agent: Szukacz/1.4
User-agent: Teleport
User-agent: TeleportPro
User-agent: Telesoft
User-agent: The Intraformant
User-agent: TheNomad
User-agent: TightTwatBot
User-agent: Titan
User-agent: toCrawl/UrlDispatcher
User-agent: True_Robot
User-agent: True_Robot/1.0
User-agent: turingos
User-agent: URLy Warning
User-agent: VCI
User-agent: VCI WebViewer VCI WebViewer Win32
User-agent: Web Image Collector
User-agent: WebAuto
User-agent: WebBandit
User-agent: WebBandit/3.50
User-agent: WebCopier
User-agent: WebEnhancer
User-agent: WebmasterWorldForumBot
User-agent: WebSauger
User-agent: Website Quester
User-agent: Webster Pro
User-agent: WebStripper
User-agent: WebZip
User-agent: WebZip/4.0
User-agent: Wget
User-agent: Wget/1.5.3
User-agent: Wget/1.6
User-agent: WWW-Collector-E
User-agent: Xenu’s
User-agent: Xenu’s Link Sleuth 1.1c
User-agent: Zeus
User-agent: Zeus 32297 Webster Pro V2.9 Win32
Crawl-delay: 20
# Begin Exclusion From Directories from robots.txt
Disallow: /cgi-bin/

Veryimportant variable among the ones passed by above robots.txt is

Crawl-Delay: 20


You might want to tune that variable a Crawl-Delay of 20 instructs all IP connects from any Web Spiders that are respecting robots.txt variables to delay crawling with 20 seconds between each and every connect client request, that is really useful for the Webserver as less connects means less CPU and Memory usage and less degraded performance put by aggressive bots crawling your site like crazy, requesting resources 10 times per second or so …

As you can conclude by the naming of some of the bots having them disabled would prevent your domain/s clients from Email harvesting Spiders and other not desired activities.


2. Listing IP addresses Hits / How many connects per IPs used to determine problematic server overloading a huge number of IPs connects

After saying few words about SE bots and I think it it is fair to also  mention here a number of commands, that helps the sysadmin to inspect Apache's access.log files.
Inspecting the log files regularly is really useful as the number of malicious Spider Bots and the Cracker users tends to be
raising with time, so having a good way to track the IPs that are stoning at your webserver and later prohibiting them softly to crawl either via robots.txt (not all of the Bots would respect that) or .htaccess file or as a last resort directly form firewall is really useful to know.

– Below command Generate a list of IPs showing how many times of the IPs connected the webserver (bear in mind that commands are designed log fields order as given by most GNU / Linux distribution + Apache default logging configuration;


webhosting-server:~# cd /var/log/apache2 webhosting-server:/var/log/apache2# cat access.log| awk '{print $1}' | sort | uniq -c |sort -n

Below command provides statistics info based on whole access.log file records, sometimes you will need to have analyzed just a chunk of the webserver log, lets say last 12000 IP connects, here is how:

webhosting-server:~# cd /var/log/apache2 webhosting-server:/var/log/apache2# tail -n 12000 access.log| awk '{print $1}' | sort | uniq -c |sort -n

You can combine above basic bash shell parser commands with the watch command to have a top like refresh statistics every few updated refreshing IP statistics of most active customers on your websites.

Here is an example:


webhosting-server:~# watch "cat access.log| awk '{print $1}' | sort | uniq -c |sort -n";


Once you have the top connect IPs if you have a some IP connecting with lets say 8000-10000 thousand times in a really short interval of time 20-30 minues or so. Hence it is a good idea to investigate further where is this IP originating from and if it is some malicious Denial of Service, filter it out either in Firewall (with iptables rules) or ask your ISP or webhosting to do you a favour and drop all the incoming traffic from that IP.

Here is how to investigate a bit more about a server stoner IP;
Lets assume that you found IP: to be having too many connects to your webserver:

webhosting-server:~# grep -i /var/log/apache2/access.log|tail -n 1 – – [12/Sep/2017:07:42:13 +0300] "GET / HTTP/1.1" 403 371 "-" "Mozilla/5.0 (compatible;; +"


webhosting-server:~# host domain name pointer


webhosting-server:~# whois|less


The outout you will get would be something like:

% This is the RIPE Database query service.
% The objects are in RPSL format.
% The RIPE Database is subject to Terms and Conditions.
% See

% Note: this output has been filtered.
%       To receive output for a database update, use the "-B" flag.

% Information related to ' –'

% Abuse contact for ' –' is ''

inetnum: –
netname:        HETZNER-RZ15
descr:          Hetzner Online GmbH
descr:          Datacenter 15
country:        DE
admin-c:        HOAC1-RIPE
tech-c:         HOAC1-RIPE
status:         ASSIGNED PA
mnt-by:         HOS-GUN
mnt-lower:      HOS-GUN
mnt-routes:     HOS-GUN
created:        2012-03-12T09:45:54Z
last-modified:  2015-08-10T09:29:53Z
source:         RIPE

role:           Hetzner Online GmbH – Contact Role
address:        Hetzner Online GmbH
address:        Industriestrasse 25
address:        D-91710 Gunzenhausen
address:        Germany
phone:          +49 9831 505-0
fax-no:         +49 9831 505-3
remarks:        *************************************************
remarks:        * For spam/abuse/security issues please contact *
remarks:        *, not this address. *
remarks:        * The contents of your abuse email will be *
remarks:        * forwarded directly on to our client for *

3. Generate list of directories and files that are most called by clients

webhosting-server:~# cd /var/log/apache2; webhosting-server:/var/log/apache2# awk '{print $7}' access.log|cut -d? -f1|sort|uniq -c|sort -nk1|tail -n10

( take in consideration that this info is provided only on current records from /var/log/apache2/ and is short term for long term statistics you have to merge all existing gzipped /var/log/apache2/access.log.*.gz )

To merge all the old gzipped files into one single file and later use above shown command to analyize run:


cd /var/log/apache2/
cp -rpf *access.log*.gz apache-gzipped/
cd apache-gzipped
for i in $(ls -1 *access*.log.*.gz); do gzip -d $i; done
rm -f *.log.gz;
for i in $(ls -1 *|grep -v access_log_complete); do cat $i >> access_log_complete; done

Though the accent of above article is Apache Webserver log analyzing, the given command examples can easily be recrafted to work properly on other Web Servers LigHTTPD, Nginx etc.

Above commands are about to put a higher load to your server during execution, so on busy servers it is a better idea, to first go and synchronize the access.log files to another less loaded servers in most small and midsized companies this is being done by a periodic synchronization of the logs to the log server used usually only to store log various files and later used to do various analysis our run analyse software such as Awstats, Webalizer, Piwik, Go Access etc.

Worthy to mention one great text console must have Apache tool that should be mentioned to analyze in real time for the lazy ones to type so much is Apache-top but those script will be not installed on most webhosting servers and VPS-es, so if you don't happen to own a self-hosted dedicated server / have webhosting company etc. – (have root admin access on server), but have an ordinary server account you can use above commands to get an overall picture of abusive webserver IPs.


If you have a Linux with a desktop GUI environment and have somehow mounted remotely the weblog server partition another really awesome way to visualize in real time the connect requests to  web server Apache / Nginx etc. is with Logstalgia

Well that's all folks, I hope that article learned you something new. Enjoy

Thanks for article neo-tux picture to

rc.local missing in Debian 8 Jessie and Debian 9 Stretch and newer Ubuntu 16, Fedora, CentOS Linux – Why is /etc/rc.local not working and how to make it work again

Monday, September 11th, 2017


If you have installed a newer version of Debian GNU / Linux such as Debian Jessie or Debian  9 Stretch or Ubuntu 16 Xenial Xerus either on a server or on a personal Desktop laptop and you want tto execute a number of extra commands next to finalization of system boot just like we GNU / Linux users used to do already for the rest 25+ years you will be surprised that /etc/rc.local is no longer available (file is completely missing!!!).

This kind of behaviour (to avoid use of /etc/rc.local and make the file not present by default right after Linux OS install) was evident across many RedHack (Redhat) distributions such as Fedora and CentOS Linux for the last number of releases and the tendency was to also happen in Debian based distros too as it often does, however there was a possibility on this RPM based distros as well as rest of Linux distros to have the /etc/rc.local manually created to work around the missing file.

But NOoooo, the smart new generation GNU / Linux architects with large brains decided to completely wipe out the execution on Linux boot of /etc/rc.local from finalization stage, SMART isn't it??

For instance If you used to eat certain food for the last 25+ years and they suddenly prohibit you to eat it because they say this is not necessery anymore how would you feel?? Crazy isn't it??

Yes I understand the idea to wipe out /etc/rc.local did have a reason as the developers are striving to constanly improve the boot speed process (and the introduction of systemd (system and service manager) in Debian 8 Jessie over the past years did changed significantly on how Linux boots (earlier used SysV boot and LSB – linux standard based init scripts), but come on guys /etc/rc.local
doesn't stone the boot process with minutes, including it will add just 2, 3 seconds extra to boot runtime, so why on earth did you decided to remove it??

What I really loved about Linux through the years was the high level of consistency and inter-operatibility, most things worked just the same way across distributions and there was some logic upgrade, but lately this kind of behaviour is changing so in many of the new things in both GUI and text mode (console) way to interact with a GNU / Linux PC all becomes messy sadly …

So the smart guys who develop Gnu / Linux distros said its time to depreciate /etc/rc.local to prevent the user to be able to execute his set of finalization commands at the end of each booted multiuser runlevel.

The good news is you can bring back (resurrect) /etc/rc.local really easy:

To so, just execute the following either in Physical /dev/tty Console or in Gnome-Terminal (for GNOME users) or for KDE GUI environment users in KDE's terminal emulator konsole:


cat <<EOF >/etc/rc.local
#!/bin/sh -e
# rc.local
# This script is executed at the end of each multiuser runlevel.
# Make sure that the script will "exit 0" on success or any other
# value on error.
# In order to enable or disable this script just change the execution
# bits.
# By default this script does nothing.

exit 0
chmod +x /etc/rc.local
systemctl start rc-local
systemctl status rc-local

I think above is self-explanatory /etc/rc.local file is being created and then to enable it we run systemctl start rc-local and then to check the just run rc-local service status systemctl status

You will get an output similar to below:


root@jericho:/home/hipo# systemctl start rc-local
root@jericho:/home/hipo# systemctl status rc-local
● rc-local.service – /etc/rc.local Compatibility
   Loaded: loaded (/lib/systemd/system/rc-local.service; static; vendor preset:
  Drop-In: /lib/systemd/system/rc-local.service.d
   Active: active (exited) since Mon 2017-09-11 13:15:35 EEST; 6s ago
  Process: 5008 ExecStart=/etc/rc.local start (code=exited, status=0/SUCCESS)
    Tasks: 0 (limit: 4915)
   CGroup: /system.slice/rc-local.service
sep 11 13:15:35 jericho systemd[1]: Starting /etc/rc.local Compatibility…
setp 11 13:15:35 jericho systemd[1]: Started /etc/rc.local Compatibility.

To test /etc/rc.local is working as expected you can add to print any string on boot, right before exit 0 command in /etc/rc.local

you can add for example:


On CentOS 7 and Fedora 18 codename (Spherical Cow) or other RPM based Linux distro if /etc/rc.local is missing you can follow very similar procedures to have it enabled, make sure


is existing

and /etc/rc.local is properly symlined to /etc/rc.d/rc.local

Also don't forget to check whether /etc/rc.d/rc.local is set to be executable file with ls -al /etc/rc.d/rc.local

If it is not executable, make it be by running cmd:

chmod a+x /etc/rc.d/rc.local

If file /etc/rc.d/rc.local happens to be missing just create it with following content:



# Your boot time rc.commands goes somewhere below and above before exit 0

exit 0

That's all folks rc.local not working is solved,
enjoy /etc/rc.local working again 🙂


How to force logrorate process logs / Make logrotate changes take effect immediately

Sunday, April 10th, 2016


Dealing with logrorate as admins we need to change or add new log-rorate configurations (on most Linux distributions configs are living uder

logrotate uses crontab to work. It's scheduled work, not as daemon, so usually no need to reload its configuration.
When the crontab executes logrotate, it will use your new config file automatically.

Most of the logrotate setups I've seen on various distros runs out of the /etc/cron.daily

$ ls -l /etc/cron.daily/logrotate 
-rwxr-xr-x 1 root root 180 May 18  2014 /etc/cron.daily/logrotate

Here is content of cron job scheduled script:

$ cat /etc/cron.daily/logrorate

#!/bin/sh /usr/sbin/logrotate /etc/logrotate.conf EXITVALUE=$? if [ $EXITVALUE != 0 ]; then /usr/bin/logger -t logrotate "ALERT exited abnormally with [$EXITVALUE]" fi exit 0

Configurations change to lograte configs takes effect on next crontab run,
but what If you need to test your config you can also execute logrotate
on your own with below ommand:


logrotate -vf /etc/logrotate.conf 

If you encounter some issues with just modified or newly added logrorate script to check out the status of last logrorate executing bunch of log-rotate scripts run on Debian  / Ubuntu etc. deb based Linux:

cat /var/lib/logrotate/status

Or on RHEL, Fedora, CentOS Linux

cat /var/lib/logrotate.status

logrotate state -- version 2


"/var/log/syslog" 2016-4-9
"/var/log/dpkg.log" 2016-4-1
"/var/log/unattended-upgrades/unattended-upgrades.log" 2012-9-20
"/var/log/unattended-upgrades/unattended-upgrades-shutdown.log" 2013-5-17
"/var/log/apache2/" 2012-9-19
"/var/log/snort/portscan.log" 2012-9-12
"/var/log/apt/term.log" 2016-4-1
"/var/log/squid/access.log" 2015-3-21
"/var/log/mysql/mysql-slow.log" 2016-4-9
"/var/log/debug" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/mysql.log" 2016-4-9
"/var/log/squid/store.log" 2015-3-21
"/var/log/apache2/" 2012-9-19
"/var/log/daemon.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/munin/munin-update.log" 2016-4-9
"/var/log/unattended-upgrades/unattended-upgrades*.log" 2013-5-16
"/var/log/razor-agent.log" 2015-2-19
"/var/log/btmp" 2016-4-1
"/var/log/squid/*.log" 2014-11-24
"/var/log/munin/munin-graph.log" 2016-4-9
"/var/log/mysql/mysql.log" 2012-9-12
"/var/log/munin/munin-html.log" 2016-4-9
"/var/log/clamav/freshclam.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/munin/munin-node.log" 2016-1-23
"/var/log/" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/apache2/other_vhosts_access.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/exim4/rejectlog" 2012-9-12
"/var/log/squid/cache.log" 2015-3-21
"/var/log/messages" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/stunnel4/stunnel.log" 2012-9-19
"/var/log/apache2/php_error.log" 2012-10-21
"/var/log/ConsoleKit/history" 2016-4-1
"/var/log/rsnapshot.log" 2013-4-15
"/var/log/iptraf/*.log" 2012-9-12
"/var/log/snort/alert" 2012-10-17
"/var/log/privoxy/logfile" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/auth.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/postgresql/postgresql-8.4-main.log" 2012-10-21
"/var/log/apt/history.log" 2016-4-1
"/var/log/pm-powersave.log" 2012-11-1
"/var/log/proftpd/proftpd.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/proftpd/xferlog" 2016-4-1
"/var/log/zabbix-agent/zabbix_agentd.log" 2016-3-25
"/var/log/alternatives.log" 2016-4-7
"/var/log/mail.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/kern.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/privoxy/errorfile" 2013-5-28
"/var/log/aptitude" 2015-5-6
"/var/log/apache2/access.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/wtmp" 2016-4-1
"/var/log/pm-suspend.log" 2012-9-20
"/var/log/snort/portscan2.log" 2012-9-12
"/var/log/mail.warn" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/bacula/log" 2013-5-1
"/var/log/lpr.log" 2012-12-12
"/var/log/mail.err" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/tor/log" 2016-4-9
"/var/log/fail2ban.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/exim4/paniclog" 2012-9-12
"/var/log/tinyproxy/tinyproxy.log" 2015-3-25
"/var/log/munin/munin-limits.log" 2016-4-9
"/var/log/proftpd/controls.log" 2012-9-19
"/var/log/proftpd/xferreport" 2012-9-19
"/var/spool/qscan/qmail-queue.log" 2013-5-15
"/var/log/user.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/apache2/error.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/exim4/mainlog" 2012-10-16
"/var/log/privoxy/jarfile" 2013-5-28
"/var/log/cron.log" 2016-4-3
"/var/log/clamav/clamav.log" 2016-4-3


The timestamp date next to each of the rotated service log is when the respective log was last rorated

It is also a handy thing to rorate only a certain service log, lets say clamav-server, mysql-server, apache2 and nginx

logrorate /etc/logrorate.d/clamav-server
logrorate /etc/logrorate.d/mysql-server
logrotate /etc/logrotate.d/nginx

Fix to “413 Request Entity Too Large” error in Nginx webserver and what causes it

Friday, November 14th, 2014


If you administer NGINX caching server serving static files content and redirecting some requests to Apache and you end up with errors when uploading big files (using HTTP PUT method), even though in Apache's PHP  upload_max_filesize is set to relatively high number upload_max_filesize = 60M.

Here is what happens during hand shake of web-browser -> server interaction 'till status is returned:

Web browser or Webcrawler robot goes through the following phases while talking to Web server:


1. Obtain an IP address from the IP name of the site (base on site URL without the leading 'http://'). 
This is provided by domain name servers (DNSs) configured for PC.
2. Open an IP socket connection to that IP address.
3. Write an HTTP data stream through that socket
(4) Receive an HTTP data stream back from the Web server in response. 
This data stream contains status codes whose values are determined by the HTTP protocol
whether successful. 


In the case the is recognized and reported to client 'web browser', causing the error.

The fix is to also increase max file upload limit in NGINX this is done via:
client_max_body_size variable in /usr/local/nginx/nginx.conf (or /etc/nginx/nginx.conf whether Nginx is installed from package).
Here is extract from nginx.conf

http {
    include       mime.types;
    default_type  application/octet-stream;
    sendfile        on;
    keepalive_timeout  65;


    server {
        client_max_body_size 60M;
        listen       80;
        server_name  localhost;

        # Main location
        location / {

To make new configuration active Restart Nginx:

/etc/init.d/nginx restart

StatusNet – Start your own hosted microblogging twitter like social network on Debian GNU / Linux

Monday, July 14th, 2014
I like experimenting with free and open source projects providing social networking capabilities like twitter and facebook. Historically I have run my own social network with Elgg – Open Source Social Network Engine. I had a very positive impression from Elgg as a social engine as, there are plenty of plugins and one can use Elgg to run free alternative to very basic equivalent of facebook, problem with Elgg I had however is if is not all the time monitored it quickly fills up with spam and besides that I found it to be still buggy and not easy to update.
The other social network free software I heard of isBuddyPress which I recently installed with Multisite (MuSite) enabled.

Since BuddyPress is WordPress based and it supports all the nice wordpress plugins, my impression is social networking based on wordpress behaves much more stable and since there is Akismet for WordPress, the amount of spammer registrations is much lower than with Elgg.

Recently I started blogging much more actively and I realized everyday I learn and read too much interesting articles and I don't log them anywhere and thought I need a way besides twitter to keep flashy notes of what I'm doing reading, learning in a short notes. I don't want to use Twitter on purpose, because I don't want to improve twitter's site SEO with adding my own stuff on their website but I want to keep my notes on my own local hosted server.

As I didn't wanted to loose time with Complexity of Elgg anymore and wanted to try to something new and I know the open source microblogging social network (Twitter Equivalent) – runs StatusNet – Free and Open Source Social software. StatusNet is well known under the motto of "Decentralized Twitter"


I took the time to grab it and install it to my home brew machine If you haven't seen StatusNet so far – you can check out demo of my installation here – registration is not freely opened because, i don't want spammers to break in, however if you want to give a try drop me a mail or comment below and I will open access for you ..

There is no native statusnet package for Debian Linux (as I'm running Debian) so to install it, I've grabbed statusnet.

To install StatusNet, everything was pretty straight forward and literally following instructionsf rom INSTALL file, i.e.:

# maps to /var/www/status/
cd /var/www/status/
tar -xzf statusnet-0.9.6.tar.gz --strip-components=1
rm statusnet-0.9.6.tar.gz
cd ..
chgrp www-data status/
chmod g+w status/
cd status/
chmod a+w avatar/ background/ file/

mysqladmin -u "root" -p "sql-root-password" create statusnet
mysql -u root -p
GRANT ALL on statusnet.* TO 'statusnetuser'@'localhost' IDENTIFIED BY 'statusnet-secret-password';

To Change default behaviour of URls to be more SEO friendly and not to show .php in URL (e.g. add so called fancy URLs – described in INSTALL):

cp htaccess.sample .htaccess

Then had to configure a VirtualHost under a subdomain or you can alternatively install and access it in browser via

An important note to open here is you have to set the URLs via which will be accessed further before proceeding with the install, if you will be using HTTPS here is time to configure it and test it before proceeding with install …  Just be warned that if you don't set the URLs properly now and try to modify them further you will get a lot of issues hard to solve which will cost you a lot of time and nervee ..

If you want to enable twitter bridging in Statusnet you will need to get Twitter consumer and secret keys, to get that you have to create new application on afterwards you will be taken to a page containing Consumer Key & Consumer Secret string.
StatusNet installation will auto generate config.php, you can further edit it manually with text editor. Content of my current statusnet config.php is here.

Most important options to change are:

$config['daemon']['user'] = 'www-data';
$config['daemon']['group'] = 'www-data';

www-data is user with which Apache is running by default on Debian Linux.

$config['site']['profile'] = 'private';

By default Status.Net will be set to run as private – e.g. it will be fitted for priv. use – messages posted will not publicly be visible. Here the possible options to choose between are:

$config['site']['profile'] = 'private';
$config['site']['profile'] = 'community';
$config['site']['profile'] = 'singleuser';
$config['site']['profile'] = 'public';

singleuser is pretty self explanatory, setting public option will open registration for any user on the internet – probably your network will quickly be filled with spam – so beware with this option. community will make statusnet publicly visible but, registration will only possible via use creation / invitation to join the network from admin.

vi /var/www/status/config.php
$config['site']['fancy'] = true;

Then to enable twitter to statusnet bridge add to config.php

vi /var/www/status/config.php

$config['twitter']['enabled'] = true;
$config['twitterimport']['enabled'] = true;
$config['avatar']['path'] = '/avatar';
$config['twitter']['consumer_key'] = 'XXXXXXXX';
$config['twitter']['consumer_secret'] = 'XXXXXXXX';
# disable sharing location by default
$config['location']['sharedefault'] = 'false';

Notice, I decided to disable statusnet sharedefault folder, because i don't have a lot of free space to provide to users. If you want to let users be allowed to share files (you the space for that), you might want to set a maximum quote of uploaded files (to prevent your webserver from being DoSed – for example by too many huge uploads), here is some reasonable settings:

$config['attachments']['file_quota'] = 7000000;
$config['attachments']['thumb_width'] = 400;
$config['attachments']['thumb_height'] = 300;


If you want to get the best out of performance of your new statusnet microblogging service, after each modification of config.php be sure to run:


php scripts/checkschema.php

Running checkschema.php is also useful, to check whether adding new plugins to check whether plugin will not throw an error.

Here is some extra useful config.php plugins to enable:

addPlugin('Gravatar', array());

If you expect to have quickly growing base of users it is recommended to also check out whether your MySQL is tuned with mysqltuner and optimize it for performance

Another useful think you would like to do is to increased the number of Statusnet avatars in the 'following' – 'followers' – 'groups' sections on my profile page by editing




line 36 in both files.
To get the full list of possible variables that can be set in config.php run in terminal:

 php scripts/setconfig.php -a

If you happen to encounter some oddities and issues with StatusNet after installation, this is most likely to some PHP hardering on compile time or some PHP.ini functions disabled for security or some missing component to install which is described as a prerequirement in statusnet INSTALL file

to debug the issues enable statusnet logging by adding in config.php

$config['site']['logdebug'] = true;
$config['site']['logfile'] = '/var/log/statusnet.log';

By default logs produced will be quite verbose and there will be plenty of information you will probably not need and will lead to a lot of "noise", to get around this, there is the LogFilter Plugin for some reasonable logging use in config.php:

addPlugin('LogFilter', array( 'priority' => array(LOG_ERR => true,
LOG_INFO => true,
LOG_DEBUG => false),
'regex' => array('/About to push/i' => false,
'/twitter/i' => false,
'/Successfully handled item/i' => false)

If you want tokeep log of statusnet it is a good idea to rorate logs periodically to keep them from growing too big, to do this create in /etc/logrotate.d new files /etc/logrotate.d/statusnet with following content:

/var/log/statusnet/*.log {
rotate 7
create 770 www-data www-data
/path/to/statusnet/scripts/ > /dev/null
/path/to/statusnet/scripts/ > /dev/null

You will probably want to to add new Links, next to StatusNet main navigation links for logged in users, this is possible by adding new line to




You will have to add a PHP context like:

                              _m('MENU','Pc-Freak.Net Blog'),
                              _('A pC Freak Blog'),

Once you're done with installation, make sure you change permissions or move install.php from /var/www/status, otherwise someone might overwrite your config.php and mess your installation …

chmod 000 /var/www/status/install.php There is plenty of other things to do with StatusNet (Support for communication with Jabber XMPP protocol, notification via SMS etc. There are also some plugins to add more statusnet functionality.

Enjoy micro blogging ! 🙂

Is Free software communistic in essence. My 5 cents rant on Free Software’s ideology

Wednesday, October 9th, 2013


I've seen people online blaming Stallman and Free Software Movement for being communistic. I've thought over it for a while so decided to give my 5 cents rant on that. Obviously there is still people in America who doesn't make difference between capitalism, communism and socialism. Yes it is true, GNU / Linux and Free Software are socialistic in essence and obviously Stallman's ideas are close to Socialists ideas, but for sure in his essence its not against capitalism and even less against democracy. So why there are still people recognizing free software as communistic? I think it is due to their mis-understanding that Free Software doesn't stand for making people equal but it is for giving chance to everyone who has interest to learn and doesn't have the financial possibility to do it. By its existince free software gives the poor Afrika's population legal way to install and use software free of charge. The idea of free software is purely scientific, there are plenty of researchers who denied patenting their invention because they wanted to share their findings with the world like Willhelm Roentgen's finding of X-rays. FS is for giving to society it is for software for people who should not be necessary divided by social status or bank account. Free Software puts out bariers since its fosters a spirit of community so much lost in our very divided century, it makes people involved in FS opened to itself and being friends no matter of social status. It is to make people free to choose and do whatever they like with each software it is about transperancy and equal start to programmers and computer enthusiasts. I'll be curious to hear people's opinion?

Fixing Qmail 451 qq temporary problem (#4.3.0) / @4000000050587780174c60dc status: qmail-todo stop processing asap / status: exiting

Wednesday, September 19th, 2012

I’m in process of installing plain new Qmail mail (SMTP) server following QmailRocks updated: Thibs QmailRocks install guide for Debian 6.0 Squeeze
The install went smoothly so far and I’m already doing this installation for about 5 hours or so. I’m done with the minor install and following Thibs instructions to Implement validrcptto feature to Qmail.

Anyone who works with Qmail, should already know the lack of validrcptto tons of SPAM problems and useless Qmail load, because of QMAIL attempts to delivery to the local mail server unexisting mail boxes ….

Fixing this whole mess is implemented with the validrcptto. I myself has installed numerous times validrcptto and almost ever I ended up in some kind of mess before fixing it once and for all, this time of course (quite traditionally) the “story” repeated to piss me off for a while 🙂

After following steps literally as described on Thibs great Qmail install tutorial!, I ended up with a Qmail mail server unable to deliver properly e-mails.

To debug why mails are not properly delivered by the mail server I used telnet:

root@qmail-host:/var/qmail/control# telnet localhost 25
Connected to localhost.
Escape character is '^]'.
220 This is Mail Pc-Freak.NET ESMTP
HELO localhost
250 This is Mail Pc-Freak.NET
250 ok
250 ok
354 go ahead
451 qq temporary problem (#4.3.0)

Some time, back while configuring another Qmail fresh install, I ended up with exactly same delivery error – I’ve take time to document how I fixed this weird qq temporary issue here

As I thought one error in “normal” Software can correspondent to one cause, I red my previous post and checked closely all that was in past wrong whether I encountered the err; guess what this time it wasn’t due to non-running (missing) clamav-daemon. Still though this was not the issue, it partially pointed me to the cause (problem with / spamd /pyzor / razor / dcc or whatever of this overall complexity ..).

First logical think was to check in logs. In /var/log/qmail/qmail-smtpd/current everything was looking good; my log looked like so:

root@qmail-host:/# tail -n 10 /var/log/qmail/qmail-smtpd/current
@40000000505877b91ab3aba4 tcpserver: end 23727 status 0
@40000000505877b91ab3af8c tcpserver: status: 0/30
@40000000505877f6273acefc tcpserver: status: 1/30
@40000000505877f6273ba9bc tcpserver: pid 23882 from
@40000000505877f6273f8dd4 tcpserver: ok 23882 localhost:
@40000000505877fd1a3c647c qmail-smtpd[23882]: MFCHECK pass []
@40000000505877fd1a3c935c qmail-smtpd[23882]: MAIL FROM:
@400000005058780123ba5eb4 qmail-smtpd[23882]: RCPT TO:

@4000000050587ccd179210b4 tcpserver: end 23882 status 256
@4000000050587ccd1792149c tcpserver: status: 0/30
root@qmail-host:/# tail -n 5 /var/log/qmail/qmail-smtpd/current
@40000000505877fd1a3c647c qmail-smtpd[23882]: MFCHECK pass []

Second guess was to check in /var/log/qmail/qmail-send/current, there found errors like:

root@qmail-host:/# tail -n 10 /var/log/qmail/qmail-send/current
@4000000050584f8e0b799194 status: local 0/10 remote 0/120
@4000000050584f8e0b79957c end msg 9610091
@4000000050584fde2f5ebf44 status: qmail-todo stop processing asap
@4000000050584fde2f5ec32c status: exiting
@4000000050584fde32d2a884 status: local 0/10 remote 0/120
@4000000050584fe8136a44ac status: qmail-todo stop processing asap
@4000000050584fe8136a4894 status: exiting
@4000000050584fe8138b884c status: local 0/10 remote 0/120
@4000000050585014232903c4 status: qmail-todo stop processing asap
@4000000050585014232907ac status: exiting
@40000000505850142363e5fc status: local 0/10 remote 0/120
@40000000505851030773efa4 status: qmail-todo stop processing asap
@40000000505851030774320c status: exiting
@400000005058510307b5f214 status: local 0/10 remote 0/120

s you can see yourself, the errors are not giving any insight on what could be the reason, so I checked in /var/log/mail.log, just to find more errors there:

Sep 18 16:22:04 qmail-host X-Qmail-Scanner-2.10st:[pcfreak134797452279623171]

d_m: output spotted from /usr/bin/reformime -x/var/spool/qscan/tmp/qmail-host/I134797452279623171/ (sh: /usr/bin/reformime: not found#012) - that shouldn't happen!

As the error points out, the whole issues are caused by missing binary – /usr/bin/reformime. Logically I had to install reformime, so did a quick apt-cache search reformime and saw reformime is part of maildrop deb package. I thought it is installed but after checking with:

dpkg -a |grep -i maildrop

Realized it is missing and install it:

qmail-host:/# apt-get --yes install maildrop

That’s all after a qmail restart, i.e.:

qmail-host:/# qmailctl restart
* Stopping qmail-smtpdssl.
* Stopping qmail-smtpd.
* Sending qmail-send SIGTERM and restarting.
* Restarting qmail-smtpd.
* Restarting qmail-smtpdssl.
* Restarting qmail-pop3d.

qq temporary error got solved and from there on qmail received and sent mails normally with validrcptto enabled. Cheers 😉

How to completely disable Replication in MySQL server 5.1.61 on Debian GNU / Linux

Monday, July 16th, 2012


Some time ago on one of the Database MySQL servers, I've configured replication as it was required to test somethings. Eventually it turned out replication will be not used (for some reason) it was too slow and not fitting our company needs hence we needed to disable it.

It seemed logical to me that, simply removing any replication related directives from my.cnf and a restart of the SQL server will be enough to turn replication off on the Debian Linux host. Therefore I proceeded removed all replication configs from /etc/my/my.cnf and issued MySQL restart i. e.:

sql-server:~# /etc/init.d/mysql restart

This however didn't turned off replication,as I thought and in phpmyadminweb frontend interface, replication was still appearing to be active in the replication tab.

Something was still making the SQL server still act as an Replication Slave Host, so after a bit of pondering and trying to remember, the exact steps I took to make the replication work on the host I remembered that actually I issued:


Onwards I run:


and found in the database the server was still running in Slave Replication mode

Hence to turn off the db host run as a Slave, I had to issue in mysql cli:

mysql> STOP SLAVE;
Query OK, 0 rows affected, 1 warning (0.01 sec)
Query OK, 0 rows affected, 1 warning (0.01 sec)

Then after a reload of SQL server in memory, the host finally stopped working as a Slave Replication host, e.g.

sql-server:~# /etc/init.d/mysql restart

After the restart, to re-assure myself the SQL server is no more set to run as MySQL replication Slave host:

Empty set (0.00 sec)

Cheers 😉

Negative impact of Cell Phones (GSM) use on individual and society

Monday, June 25th, 2012

Negative impact of Cell Phones GSM on individual and society

We all live in an age, where cell-phone communication has become a standard part of our daily lives. As with everything new adopted in basic human life. GSM tool inclusion in our life had a severe impact on both individuals and in summary to whole society groups and nations.

The benefits out of having an instant “channel” for communication to anyone else in the world are indoubtfully numerous. However as present tosicety is learned to mostly thing in one direction, most people didn’t have a clear understanding on the negative impact of this little communicators on our mind body and soul.

1.; Negative impact of mobile phones on body level

Whenever we talk over the phone especially when picking up incoming calls or initiating out-going ones, the GSM device has to connect to the closest network cell “dial up” and wait for initialization of remote or local connection. The levels of radiation waves during the two mobiles connects up is higher. Therefore if one moves the phone near his ear listening for the status of call the amount of radiation that enters our brains is slightly higher. The extra-radiation whether mobiles are connecting is also few times more whether our phone is ringning, hence it is unhealthy to put the phone near our ear before we press the Answer Call button.

2.;; Negative effect of continuous mobile phones use on human brain

Knowing about the increased radiation on connection initialization thanksfully one can protect himself by simply not putting the mobile headset near ear on call initialization. Though this “problem” can be partially solved, next comes the health brain damage (tumours) which according to some researches are higher among people who do frequentlong phone call conversations. In long phone calls the brain is exposed for a longer time to the flowing waves making the peer to peer call possible. According to some medical researches, a long and frequent phone calls could be a reason not only for brain cancers but also other misfunctions or damages in normal brain cells functioning.

3.;;; The bad impact of Cell Phones on nervous system

Another health issue which the daily phone use and the constant exposure to mobile network cells radio frequency radiation affects generally our nervous system.

Unexpected phone calls early in morning or late at night are a cause for increased bodily stress and even the fear sometimes for an incoming phone call are a cause for many types of neurological disorders diagnosed by psychiatrists.
Even when we sleep at night the mobile phone periodically connects to the nearest mobile cell generating some almost undetectable “waves contamination”. This constant waves air flow caused by the mobile network cells positioned all around cities is not usual thing for our bodies. This also has some influence on our nervous system as the nervous sysm tends to be a bit more alert because of the waves constantly passing the body. The natural reaction of our bodies nerves is to try to balance itself. As nervous system of different people is not equal some people’s nervous system is more prone to having difficulties to balance the disbalance created by the increased number of mobile air waves.
The result of this to many people is in increased sleeplessnes and hardships to get asleep (according to research taken place in American Academy of Sleep Medicine.).

4.;;;; Lost of social and ethical behaviour in people

There is lately observed a huge shift from a face to face communication to peer to peer (p2p) on the phone. The cellphones breeds a culture of socially group detached people (the communication over phone is rarely a conference) but rather consists of communication between two persons (peer to peer). The p2p communication is not only a primary mean of communication of people exposed to heavy phone use. p2p Communication is a primary communication in Skype, Google Talk and mostly all modern available communication medias and softwares.

As more and more people spend nowdays more time on the mobile than in real communication, this makes them introverted and isolated and increases the inability to deal with real human f2f interaction. In other words continuous phone use re-trains us to communicate with others via the mobile. Besides that according to numerous researches about 40 to 50% of visual communication whether a phone call is used is lost (this also makes negotiation or expressing over phone harder and at least twice longer than in real communication).

The influence of the decreased social abilities cause of the phone use has also an impact on ethical behaviour of people too. The increased lost of communication abilities makes even daily real communication vague and lacking accepted social norms and ethical values. Next to that comes the huge problem of over-simplification of communication. As the line communication over the phone loose half of the communication as well as sometimes there are quality of voice over the network interferences. People are doing their best to simplify the communication adopting short command like like phrases and talking in a slang.

5.;;;;; Addiction to mobile phone use

The use of mobile phone often has a short beep sounds, whether you work on the keyboard receive a phone call or look for some mobile functionality staring at the screen. We’re wearing the mobile everywhere with us so often we do check the mobile screen quite un-consciously (by addiction). Checking the mobile screen to see what time is it has become almost an instinct and an automated learned behaviour.

The continous use of mobile phones makes many people mobile addicts. There are huge amount of people I’ve observed who speaks everyday for few hours (whether everytime they feel lonely they call someone in order not to feel lonely). The mobile phone addiction in youngsters is slighly higher than in adults. Probably the most mobile dependent addicts are kids who were given a mobile to use since there very early years.
Anyways there are tons of adults nowdays who cannot even think to be able to live without mobile and even cannot understand: how can anyone think that life could be possible without a cell phone. This kind of thinking is a direct trait showing an addiction and dependency on the phone such people have.

How to copy CD or DVD on GNU/Linux and FreeBSD using console or terminal

Monday, November 14th, 2011

CD Burning Console Terminal Linux / FreeBSD picture

These days more and more people start to forget the g* / Linux old times when we used to copy CDs from console using dd in conjunction with mkisofs .

Therefore to bring some good memories back of the glorious console times I decided to come up with this little post.

To copy a CD or DVD the first thing one should do is to make an image copy of the present inserted CD into the CD-drive with dd :

1. Make copy of the CD/DVD image using dd

# dd if=/dev/cdrom of=/tmp/mycd.iso bs=2048 conv=notrunc

/dev/cdrom is the location of the cdrom device, on many Linuces including (Debian) /dev/cdrom is just a link to the /dev/ which corresponds to the CD drive. Note on FreeBSD the location for the CD Drive is /dev/acd0
/tmp/mycd.iso instructs dd CD image creation to be placed in /tmp/ directory.
bs argument instructs it about the byte size portions by which the content of the CD-Drive inserted CD will be read. bs value of 2048 is actually only 2KB per dd read, increasing this value will decrease the time required for the CD image to be extracted.

2. Prepare CD image file to be ready for burning

After dd completes the image copy operation, next to prepare the extracted image / ISO to be ready for burning mkisofs is used:

# mkisofs -J -L -r -V TITLE -o /tmp/imagefile.iso /tmp/mycd.iso

The -J option makes the CD compatible for Pcs running Microsoft Windows. The -V TITLE option should be changed to whatever title the new CD should have, -r will add up status bar for the mkisofs operation.
-r is passed to create specific file permissions on the newly created CD, -o specifies the location where mkisofs will produce its file based on the CD image /tmp/mycd.iso .

3. Burning the mkisofs image file to a CD/DVD on GNU / Linux

linux:~# cdrecord -scanbus
linux:~# cdrecord dev=1,0,0 /tmp/imagefile.iso

If all wents okay with cdrecord operation, after a while the CD should be ready.

4. Burning the mkisofs image file to CD on FreeBSD

freebsd# burncd -f /dev/acd0 data /tmp/imagefile.iso fixate